Newcastle Falcons: John Wells faith in Mark Wilson's England bid

Mark Wilson
Mark Wilson has made 138 tackles for Newcastle Falcons in 2014-15

Newcastle Falcons head coach John Wells believes back-rower Mark Wilson's continued good form will be enough to win a place in the England set-up.

Wilson, 25, has been a stand-out performer this term, with 138 tackles putting him among the five most prolific Premiership players.

However, the Cumbrian was not named in the Saxons side on 21 January.

"Mark's doing well, if he keeps playing like this no doubt his time will come," Wells told BBC Newcastle.

Falcons team-mate Kieran Brookes was initially left out of the full England squad in favour of a Saxons call-up, although the prop's promotion to cover for David Wilson means the north east side does have representation.

Wilson's back-row rivals
England seniorEngland Saxons
Calum Clark (Northampton Saints)Tom Croft (Leicester Tigers)
Nick Easter (Harlequins)Dave Ewers (Exeter Chiefs)
James Haskell (Wasps)Maro Itoje (Saracens)
Chris Robshaw (Harlequins)Matt Kvesic (Gloucester Rugby)
Billy Vunipola (Saracens)Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs)
Tom Wood (Northampton Saints)Sam Burgess* (Bath Rugby)
* Named in the backs but could operate in the back-row

England Saxons' back-row options against Irish Wolfhounds game on Friday night include Saracens flanker Maro Itoje, who captained England Under-20s to the Junior World Championship title last year.

In addition, Thomas Waldrom's form at Exeter and the experience of Leicester's Tom Croft mean there is tough competition for places outside of the senior squad at present.

"I've got no doubt that Mark will do [get a call-up] in time, but those guys who have got Saxons selection at the moment have had to wait their time," added Wells.

"There's always going to be frustration from them and their clubs that they haven't been pushed hard enough.

"I know, I've been there. I know what it's like trying to win that selection but also being one of the guys that has had to make those selections.

"We want to give all the players an opportunity to be the best they can be, progress and get selections they deserve."

Meanwhile Falcons lock Will Witty has signed a two-year extension to his contract.

Witty, 19, will continue as a member of the senior academy, where he has played since arriving at Kingston Park in November 2013.

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